From Hell’s Heart I Stab at Thee!

24 Aug
“Towards thee I roll, thou all-destroying but unconquering whale; to the last I grapple with thee; from hell’s heart I stab at thee; for hate’s sake I spit my last breath at thee. Sink all coffins and all hearses to one common pool! and since neither can be mine, let me then tow to pieces, while still chasing thee, though tied to thee, thou damned whale! Thus, I give up the spear!” 
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Shame on you if you identified the above as Khan’s death speech to Kirk in Star Trek II, shame! (sorry, I think I might be channeling my grandmother). The above quote (by Capt. Ahab) is of course from the great american novel Moby Dick by Herman Melville.
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(above)  Cans of  “Moby Dick”  brand whale meat for pets. primarily used for Dogs and cats.

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Classic texts have always inspired  artists/illustrators to create images. What always amazes me is the width and breadth an icon go to over it’s  life in the public conciousness. Characters who seem to be forged in hell latter appaear with big goofy grins and shel pet food.  Think frankenstein which scared the bejezuz out of movie goers in 1931 ending up as “frankenberry cereal”. But all that is grist for the illustrator’s mill. There is a rich, rich history of illustrating Moby as evidenced by  the great , and varied work on display.

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(above) right in case  and directly above Rockwell Kent’s rich wood engravings for the 1930 Lakside Press of Chicago.

(above)  Moby Dick: A pop-up Book by Sam Ita

(above) Mark Summer’s 1994 illustrations for  a Barnes and Noble Edition, next to paper Moby toy.

(Above) Queequeg by illustrator Mathew Cruickshank

Many thanks to illustrator Bob Sikoryak for the loan of his superb Moby Dick collection for this display.

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